The Top Ten Wrestling Stories of the Week 9/25: R.I.P. Animal, Retribution Main Events WWE Raw, Clash of Champions, More

Welcome back TJR readers! Did you spend all day Friday remembering a Supreme woman and miss Smackdown? Perhaps you decided to rewatch Schitt’s Creek after it swept the Emmy’s and missed RAW. Worry not, for I have returned with another edition of The Top Ten Wrestling Stories of the Week to catch you up.

10. WWE Introduces New Wines

Are you hoping to make a big impression at your next fancy dinner party? Maybe you are trying to impress that girl of your dreams. Put away the tuxedo and cancel the limo because nothing says class more than professional wrestling wine. This week, WWE introduced WWE Wines featuring The Undertaker and The Ultimate Warrior. For a mere $100 plus $20 shipping you can pre-order a bottle of each wine and instantly become the symbol of sophistication. Don’t throw away those sweatpants, or try to move out of your parents’ basement quite yet; just go to wwewines.com and capture your dream girls’ heart. (TJRWrestling)

9. Roman Reigns Promises New Gear and Music

Roman Reigns chest will be a little less protected starting this Sunday at Clash of Champions. During a Zoom call with fans to raise money for Connor’s Cure, Reigns stated that he will be losing his trademark chest protector and wrestling shirtless instead. Being shirtless is not the only change that Reigns is promising. He also stated that sometime in the future he will be debuting new music. Adding a fresh look and sound should only help to cement Roman’s new heel persona; although in my house for some reason every time Roman takes his shirt off my wife seems to cheer him on more. (TJRWrestling)

8. Otis Served Court Papers

Are you someone who often wishes that there was more legal drama in wrestling? Well, oh boy do I have some great news for you! The Miz and John Morrison sued Otis this week on Smackdown, claiming emotional distress, destruction of property, and creating an unsafe working environment. Miz and Morrison are demanding that Otis surrender the Money in the Bank Briefcase, or end up going to court. I, for one, am personally upset by this. If I had known it was an option, I would have sued the WWE writers years ago for emotional distress. (TJRWrestling)

7. AEW Dynamite Main Event Changed Due to Positive COVID-19 Test

Any wrestling fan knows one undeniable fact, and that is that “plans change pal.” The Main Event of AEW Dynamite this week was supposed to be Lance Archer, Brian Cage and Ricky Starks against Jon Moxley, Darby Allin and Will Hobbs. Unfortunately, however, Lance Archer tested positive for COVID-19, forcing a change to the Main Event. Jon Moxley ended up successfully defending the AEW Heavyweight Championship in an excellent match against Eddie Kingston. The ability to adapt on the fly and turn chicken sh*t into chicken salad is very important in wrestling. Or, in 2020, it’s important to have the ability to turn moose sh*t into moose salad. (TJRWrestling)

6. Melina Returning to WWE

The Women’s roster in WWE is about to add a familiar face. Former three-time WWE Women’s Champion and two-time Divas Champion Melina is set to return to WWE. Melina was a staple of the Women’s division from 2004 until her eventual release in 2011. Since being released, Melina has stayed active on the wrestling scene, recently competing in the NWA. At 41 years old, Melina will be a few years older than the average woman on the roster, as well as a few years younger than the average Saudi show main eventer. (TJRWrestling)

5. Three Title Matches Set for NXT Takeover

The card for the next NXT Takeover event on Sunday, October 4th began to take shape this week. Johnny Gargano will attempt to become a two-time North American Champion when he goes against champion Damien Priest. This week on NXT, Candice LeRae won a number one contender’s Battle Royal, and now will go on to face Women’s Champion Io Shirai. Also this week on NXT, a Gauntlet Eliminator Match was held to determine the new number one contender for the NXT Heavyweight Championship. Kyle O’Reilly ended up winning the match and will go on to face NXT Champion Finn Bálor. O’Reilly, who is a three-time NXT Tag Team Champion, stated in a backstage interview that this is the biggest moment of his entire life. My wife similarly said the exact same thing when she heard that Roman Reigns will now be wrestling shirtless. (TJRWrestling)

4. Rey Mysterio’s Daughter and Murphy Interact

Monday Night RAW is seemingly going to have another Mysterio as part of their show going forward. Seth Rollins came to the ring and called out the Mysterio family. Rollins proceeded to reveal DNA results, claiming that Dominick is definitely not his son (a call back to the Eddie Guerrero/Rey Mysterio storyline from 2005.) After Rey dismissed this claim, Rollins went on to suggest that perhaps it’s Rey’s 19-year-old daughter Aalyah that isn’t his child. Rollins brought up how Aalyah briefly checked on Murphy, after the cage match last week. This caused Rey to warn Rollins to keep his daughter’s name out of his mouth, stating that he already talked to his daughter about this topic. After this exchange, Aalyah ended up running backstage in anger. Later in the show, the Mysterio family was shown backstage, with Aalyah yelling at her father claiming that she is old enough to defend herself. Aalyah then stormed off again, before being found my Murphy backstage. Murphy went on to apologize if he has done anything to hurt Aalyah. It is unknown if Aalyah and Murphy are going to pursue a romantic relationship, or perhaps with all the family drama, Aalyah is just looking for a Buddy. (TJRWrestling)

3. Retribution Receive WWE Contracts and Names

Retribution is now officially a member of the WWE Roster. The five main members of the group, now all wearing new masks, opened up RAW this week. This core group is made up of three men and two women, who appear to be Dio Maddin, Dominick Dijakovic, Shane Thorn, Mia Yim and Mercedes Martinez. They announced that they had now officially signed WWE contracts, and are now a part of the RAW roster. The Hurt Business then came out and challenged the group to a match later in the night. In the Main event, the male members of Retribution faced off against Bobby Lashley, Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin. The three Retribution members were even given new names, with Maddin now going by MACE, Dijakovic as T-BAR and Thorne as SLAPJACK. It is yet to be seen if Yim and Martinez will get cool new names as well. Let’s just hope if they do that they give them the same amount of care and thought that they did their male counterparts, as I would hate for this to start getting hokey and silly. (TJRWrestling)

2. WWE Clash of the Champions: Gold Rush to Take Place This Weekend

WWE Clash of the Champions: Gold Rush is scheduled to take place this Sunday night at 7PM ET. A whopping nine title matches are booked for the show, including both of the men’s and women’s world championships being defended. Asuka will defend the Raw Women’s Championship during the Kickoff Show against Zelina Vega. Nikki Cross will try to capture the Smackdown Women’s Championship when she faces Bayley. Cousins will collide when Jey Uso tries to defeat Roman Reigns to become the new WWE Universal Champion. And in the main event, Randy Orton and Drew McIntyre will try to settle their feud for the WWE Championship in an Ambulance Match. So if any of the nine title matches interest you or like my wife you just want to see a large Samoan man with his shirt off, check out WWE Clash of Champions this Sunday. (TJRWrestling)

1. Road Warrior Animal Passes Away

We lost one of the greatest tag team wrestlers in history this week. Joe “Animal” Laurinaitis of the legendary Road Warriors/Legion of Doom passed away this week at the age of 60 years old. Animal, with his partner Hawk, formed the Road Warriors in 1983 and went on to compete all around the world (including in WWE as the Legion of Doom) until Hawk’s death in 2003. The Road Warriors won many championships during their historic run including being the only team to ever win the AWA, NWA, and WWF Tag Team Titles. In 2011, Animal along with Hawk and their manager Paul Ellering was deservingly inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.

On a personal note, I had the pleasure to meet Animal at a convention before WrestleMania 35. They say never meet your heroes, but in Animal’s case, that couldn’t have been further from the truth. I found him to be friendly and kind, as he talked to both of my sons and even took the time to record a promo for my podcast. I would like to wish condolences to Joe’s friends and family, and thank him personally for the rush my family got when we met him. (TJRWrestling)


That will conclude another edition of The Top Ten Wrestling Stories of the Week. As always, if you like what I do, please follow me on Facebook and Twitter @BackseatBookers and listen to my podcast The BackseatBookers. (Please be aware that it is explicit as I also sometimes go by the name F-WORD.)